Ahead of the Gujarat Assembly elections that are scheduled to be held in December 2022, an Ahmedabad court on Friday, 16 September, sentenced Gujarat Independent MLA Jignesh Mevani and 18 others to six months in jail in connection with a case about a protest at Gujarat University in 2016, Live Law reported.
The case against Mevani and his associates was registered at the Gujarat University police station in 2016, for staging a road blockade and demanding that a building of the law department of Gujarat University be renamed after BR Ambedkar.
Mevani and his associates of Rashtriya Dalit Adhikari Manch had been arrested on charges of rioting and damaging public property.
The First Information Report (FIR) was registered under Sections 143 (unlawful assembly) and 147 (rioting) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) as well as other sections of the Gujarat Police Act.
‘Punish the Agitators and Release the Rapists’: Mevani
Taking a jibe at the release of the convicts in the Bilkis Bano case, Mevani sarcastically tweeted in Hindi, "Punish the agitators and release the rapists."
In an Instagram caption, Mevani said that the "governments will release the rapists of Bilkis Bano but will not spare protesters even if their demands are just."
Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate PN Goswami suspended Mevani and his associates' sentence till 17 October so that they could file appeals.
Legislative Assembly elections in Gujarat are scheduled to be held in December 2022. In the last elections, Congress was the main contender to the ruling BJP; however, in the upcoming elections, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is trying to make inroads in the state.
AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal was recently on a two-day visit to Ahmedabad, where he addressed a gathering of autorickshaw drivers ahead of the polls.
(With inputs from PTI and Live Law.)